[This session happened on December 22, 2014. Two of the players missed the session due to work (they work retail and it was the week before Christmas, so they were crazy busy) but we decided to play anyways as it was a planning session for the run and the missing players were not heavily involved in the planning.
Bookie’s player and I continued learning how the matrix part of the rules worked. As we played, we discovered what areas we still needed to learn better and read up on. I winged a few areas and decided I needed to diagram out how things work as the rules are not very search friendly on the spur of the moment. It is clear that they were written to conserve space, which can cause issues when looking for a particular sentence or phrase in a dense paragraph.]
The Fin – female human con artist and gambler from India, by way of Russia (low level physical adept), posh and elegant
Void – female human physical adept B&E specialist, a shadow that blends in easily
Murdock – male elf kilt-wearing street mage, at home with the hobos
Bookie – male elf alcoholic hacker, favors whiskey with a whiskey chaser
Prometheus – male human street samurai, handy with any firearm
NPC’d Player Characters
Sin – male human rigger, knows exactly the wrong thing to say and says it
Killroy – male human street samurai, specializes in hand-to-hand combat
[Still] Wednesday, November 13, 2075 – 4:00 pm in Ebey’s Bar in Exile
Deciding that more information was needed before planning the run, several things were done at the same time. Bookie started a net search for information on the target (Perry Fuller) and the target’s parents. Sin sent some Fly-Spies to the high school to get closer looks at parts of the school’s security, particularly the windows and skylights, at Void’s request.
Bookie learned that the target’s parents both work for Gentry Astronetics, a leading research firm in orbital sciences, but his parents divorced several years ago. Perry’s father died four days ago in an accident and now Perry was living with his mother. Insider business-news sources speculated that Zenith AstroTech (ZAT), a Gentry Astronetics competitor, might be planning a hostile takeover of, or be employee poaching from, Gentry Astronetics. This news calmed some of the team's nerves about all the corporate bodyguards with the parents visiting the school and seemed to explain what the run was about – The Fin decided that Perry was being grabbed to put pressure on his mother to leave Gentry and go to ZAT.
Sin’s Fly-Spies allowed Void to get close views of the school’s windows and skylights, allowing her to evaluate the school’s physical security. The skylights were bullet-proof materials and both the skylights and the roof-access hatch had R4 maglocks. The classroom windows (including those on Room 305) were also bullet-proof, but had manual locks instead of maglocks.
Feeling they had enough data, Void and The Fin started planning the actual run. After discussing all the possible ways to enter and exit the school, they decided a roof entry was best. With the low level of security on the roof, they decided a team could use a zipline to get to the roof from a neighboring building. Asking Prometheus what he had seen while investigating sniper positions in the area, Prometheus presented three different access points and what issues each came with. Taking that data into account, Void and The Fin selected the bell tower from the adjacent cathedral as the best option. They thought to ask Prometheus if he could use a grapple gun and Prometheus said he could.
[Actually, he couldn't as he didn't have the necessary skill, so he lied about it, thinking, “How hard could it be?” Once Killroy secured a grapple gun through a contact, Prometheus took the next day (Thursday) to find a location in the Redmond Barrens with similar relative altitudes and practiced with the grapple gun until he had basic proficiency (spent the necessary Karma and time to purchase the skill).]
Void and The Fin next discussed various ways to get to, grab, and move the target. They decided that a Neuro-Stun grenade to knockout the classroom would be the simplest way to make grabbing the target easy. That said, they needed to know if there were cameras in the classroom, so they sent Bookie back into the school’s computer system.
Getting back in was easy for Bookie and it took very little time to locate the files he was looking for. He grabbed the school security system file, the student medical records file, and the faculty personnel files. Unfortunately, he failed to disable the data bomb on the security system file and it went off. Working through the feedback, Bookie was just able to squelch the alarm triggered by the data bomb. Deciding to cover his tracks as best he could, Bookie triggered a system reboot of the school’s computer system. Doing so set off another alarm, but Bookie caught that alarm signal as well and the whole event ended up looking like an unscheduled, but normal, system reboot. [Bookie spent an Edge on the roll to squelch each alarm, but felt they were points well spent.]
With the layout of the school’s entire security system now available, Void studied the schematics and noticed something unusual: there were hidden layers in the file. Triggering them to display, she found there were hidden cameras in all of the classrooms, each centered over the teacher’s desk.
With this new data, Void identified all of the cameras that Bookie would need to loop to keep the intrusion team off camera. She and The Fin also decided that Murdock would need to go along to make the infiltration group invisible. Void would need to lead the infiltration team to deal with any security issues that might crop up and Killroy would need to go as he was the only one strong enough to lug around an unconscious body, even with an extraction bag. [Sort of a body-bag with air holes and various straps for easy carrying.]
The Fin had Killroy track down a grapple gun with stealth line and a catalyst stick through his contacts. While Killroy was doing that, The Fin placed a call to Svetlana, a fixer contact of hers who specialized in wetwork. The Fin asked Svetlana for some Nero-Stun IX grenades. [Neuro-Stun IX disperses one minute after deployment but is very difficult to get, whereas Neuro-Stun VII is fairly easy to get but persists for 10 minutes.] Both Killroy and The Fin were able to find what they were looking for and arrange delivery by dawn on Thursday.
Once the necessary gear was ordered, the plan was formalized. The team spent another couple hours going over it and looking for gaps. Finding none, they went home to get sleep. Thursday would be for final preparations.
End of Session
[At the end of the session I had the players tell me the plan one last time, from start to finish, and wrote it down as they told me. This way I knew what they were expecting to do in the next session. Also, this put us all on the same page so no one would be blind-sided by anything and we would be able to remember what the plan was the following week. Several of the players also wrote it down so they wouldn’t forget and could tell it correctly to the players who missed this session. I planned when the complicating incidents would happen when I originally wrote up this run, so now I had the PC plan to match up to my own timeline and I wouldn’t miss any events as I ran.]
The Pickup - Session 01